Wednesday, January 1, 2014

What I learned from #RWRunStreak

I set out in November to run at least one mile every day from Thanksgiving to New Years. My running streak lasted 25 days before illness, fatigue and scheduling torpedoed the effort.

The theory behind a running streak is getting out to run one mile will help you run farther. One mile becomes two or three, and pretty soon you're logging more miles that you ever thought possible.

That didn't work for me. One mile often was just one mile. Getting my daily "run" in became a chore often done as dusk fell and I darted around the neighborhood for 10 minutes. Even worse were the days I pounded out two miserable miles on a treadmill at the gym. My longest run during the streak was nine miles.

Other issues? Yes:

  • At first, the effort cranked my metabolism. I was hungry all the time. But as my body adjusted to doing short runs every day, that appetite was unwarranted. I gained a couple pounds during my run streak. 
  • Though I was able to keep up on yoga and weight workouts during the running streak, biking went bye-bye. 
With all of these negatives, I did learn a valuable lesson: I really love running, about four times a week. I thought this was true before I started streaking. Back in college, we trained 13 of 14 days and it destroyed me. Running was no longer fun. Cruising through four to 10 miles four times a week is just right for me. It also leaves room for those other things I love to do: cycling, beach walks with the dogs, hiking, yoga. 

I won't be streaking again any time soon, but I'm excited to return to my normal running regime. 

1 comment:

  1. Jennifer,

    Rest days should be looked forward to, not dreaded. Running every other day, or three to four days a week is optimal if you have other activities to fill out the non-running days like cycling, swimming or hiking. Daily running is a recipe for weight-gain, injury and burnout.

    Ed Price
    Running Coach
    Santa Cruz Triathlon Association


What are you searching for?

"So be prepared to quit. Do it willingly and with honest resolve. You'll be back. The marvelous thing about running is that you will never become jaded by it. Boredom, injury or anguish may overtake you from time to time, but the reward that first drew you to begin logging the miles remain untarnished and available -- always. Just put on your shoes and head out the door."